Certainly feminism illustrates for us the complaint cycle, but women of all persuasions do the same thing in a myriad of ways. It all begins with discontent. I think it is safe to assume that Eve had been content in the garden until the serpent made his evil suggestion. “Why don’t you get to eat from this tree?” Apparently, Eve had not felt deprived until that moment. The discontent is what set her up for the deception (aka, lie) that immediately followed. And she bit.
Women are far less vulnerable to deception when they are content. How many contented Christian women are apt to marry an unbeliever? No chance. But a discontented woman is more prone to rationalize and swallow the deceit. “Well, he went to church as a kid. And he’s not an atheist. And I prayed that if God didn’t want me to marry him, that He would take away my love for him, and He didn’t take it away, so I think that is a sign.” A contented spirit gives you a clear head and enables you to see the folly.
In the world of feminism we’ve seen the cycle played out on a national scale. Women were discontent “just” being at home and swallowed the lie about finding fulfillment behind a desk somewhere. They felt “unfulfilled” in their calling as mothers and were set up to believe the lie that children hinder a woman’s progress to self-fulfillment. They compared themselves to men and felt inferior (what a dumb thing to do) and were set up to believe they could be happy trying to behave like men do. I could keep going, but I hope you see what I mean. It’s very much like volleyball: the discontentment is the set; the deception is the spike.
Now many feminists are waking up to the fact that the promise of fulfillment out in the workplace was barren indeed. But just deciding to barge back into their homes (if they have one) without repenting of the initial discontentment, just insures that the cycle will just start over again.
Women are naturally complainers. That’s the only explanation for all the warnings in Proverbs to stay away from the contentious wife, the angry woman, the brawling woman, the clamorous, foolish and odious woman. Yikes. It’s like he’s talking to us.
I remember the shock I had attending my first Bible study for married women. All they did was complain about their husbands and I felt sorry for them all because I had gotten such a good one. But then I learned that complaining about husbands is just part of the liturgy for many women. And the more they hear themselves complain, the more discontent they become, and the weaker they are to resist the lies and deception that are waiting in the wings.
Beware discontent. Beware the cycle of complaint. It robs women of fruitfulness and leaves them confused and misguided.
Let me end with a quote from one of my favorite Puritans, Jeremiah Burroughs: “I find a sufficiency of satisfaction in my own heart, through the grace of Christ that is in me….I have a sufficient portion between Christ and my soul abundantly to satisfy me in every condition.”